Mini Ricotta Doughnuts
Ricotta yields a light and tender pastry dough, which makes it perfect for these addictive fritters, brightened with lemon and topped with a drizzle of warm herbaceous honey. You could swap out the lemon zest for orange zest, if you like. You can also skip the honey drizzle and dust the doughnuts with confectioners’ sugar instead.
- Canola oil for deep-frying
- 3/4 cup (4 oz./125 g) all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- 2 tsp. finely grated lemon zest
- 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
- 1 cup (8 oz./250 g) whole-milk ricotta cheese
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 2 Tbs. sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
For the honey drizzle:
- 1/4 cup (3 oz./90 g) honey
- 1 tsp. coarsely chopped fresh thyme
- 1 tsp. finely grated lemon zest
Pour oil to a depth of 1 1/2 inches (4 cm) into a deep, heavy saucepan and heat to 370°F (188°C) on a deep-frying thermometer.
In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, lemon zest and salt. In a large bowl, whisk together the ricotta, eggs, sugar and vanilla. Add the dry ingredients and whisk until well blended.
Working in batches, gently drop level tablespoonfuls of the batter into the hot oil and fry, turning occasionally, until golden, about 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels to drain. Allow the oil to return to 370°F between batches.
Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, warm the honey, thyme, and lemon zest, stirring occasionally, until a thin, fragrant sauce forms. Serve alongside or drizzle over the finished doughnuts. Makes 24 doughnuts.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Dessert of the Day, by Kim Laidlaw (Weldon Owen, 2013)